Do Epson inkjet printers consider themselves "out of ink" after a predefined number of pages, or after the ink actually runs outs (or comes close)?

Some people claim it's a predetermined number of pages. Thus if your pages just have a little text on them, the printer will claim it is out of ink, even when the ink cartridge is still fairly full.

Other people claim it's determined strictly by the amount of ink used during printing, thus the cartridge will be always be close to empty when the printer claims it needs to be replaced.

Which is it?

Update 1: Epson Ink Cartridges 124 and 126, which work in models such as the Epson NX-430 Printer.

Update 2: Possible relevant information: http://www.epson.com/cgi-bin/Store/jsp/dlp/dynamicLanding.do?dlpId=n_1101_ink-yield-disclaimer

  • You may want to add the model and the cartridge IDs. the mechanism has changed over time and may vary between models. – fixer1234 May 10 '15 at 6:56
  • @fixer1234 Thanks. Epson Ink Cartridges 124 and 126, which work in models such as the Epson NX-430 inkjet printer. – RockPaperLizard May 10 '15 at 7:32
  • More often than not its the former. I haven't seen a printer that actually checks its ink levels in ages. – Journeyman Geek May 10 '15 at 7:48
  • @JourneymanGeek I honestly don't know. This page: epson.com/cgi-bin/Store/jsp/dlp/… implies the opposite. – RockPaperLizard May 10 '15 at 8:26
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    From what I can tell, it's based on ink use, not page count. The cartridges track the amount of ink used and declare themselves empty when they are in fact empty, at least on my WorkForce WF-3540 and 127 cartridges. There may be some ink left in the cartridge when the printer prompts for replacement, but it's not much in my experience. – bwDraco May 11 '15 at 6:24

Modern Epson printers track ink use, not page count, for determining when a cartridge needs to be replaced.

  • The printer and cartridges only declare empty when they are in fact empty based on the amount of ink used, and will not prompt for replacement solely because of page count.

  • In my experience on a WorkForce WF-3540 and Epson 127 cartridges, "empty" cartridges are indeed physically empty. There is so little ink left in them that you practically cannot hear it when you shake the cartridge. I wouldn't worry about it.

  • Thank you! Do the Epson NX-430 printer and the Epson 124 and Epson 126 cartridges satisfy your definition of "modern"? – RockPaperLizard May 11 '15 at 7:24
  • The NX430 was released in October 2011. I would say it's modern by this definition as the 126 cartridges are accepted by my WF-3540 (although it does not take the high-yield 127 cartridges). – bwDraco May 11 '15 at 15:38

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